Can I drive while taking medical marijuana?
It is highly recommended that you do not drive while taking medical cannabis. It’s important to know the laws, and how long cannabis stays in your system. However, answering whether it is legal to drive when being treated with medical cannabis depends on the type of medication you are being treated with.
The main psychoactive substance in cannabis can be detected in a breath test for many hours after medicating and can last in your urine many days after the last dose. It can take up to a week for a single dose of cannabis to be excreted from your urine. THC has been proven to impair driving abilities.
Unlike alcohol, there is not a standard for impairment or a recommendation around consumption time and the time it leaves your system, driving with any amount of THC in your saliva, urine or blood is considered drug driving and is illegal in all states and territories in Australia.
is the non-psychoactive substance in cannabis. If you are being treated with a CBD only treatment then it is legal for you to drive as long as you are not found to be impaired. There is limited research on whether CBD alone can impact motor skills and driving.
Here is the specific direction from each state on medical cannabis and driving:
- Medical cannabis and driving in Victoria
- Medical cannabis and driving in New South Wales
- Medical cannabis and driving in Queensland
- Medical cannabis and driving in South Australia
- Medical cannabis and driving in Western Australia
- Medical cannabis and driving in Tasmania – documentation doesn’t exist
- Medical cannabis and driving in Australian Capital Territory
- Medical cannabis and driving in Northern Territory
In conclusion, while taking cannabis there are some instances where it would be safe to drive, however there are no legal limits set. However the future is bright with a new cannabis breathalyser which is placed to help create standards on driving with residual cannabis in your system.
If you’re taking cannabis it is safer to abstain from driving within 24-48 hours of taking your medicine.
You can read our “How long cannabis stays in your system?” FAQ to learn the specifics. Or, if you’re interested in learning more about accessing medical cannabis you can read our Guide To Medical Cannabis in Australia.